My daughter Hanna has gotten to the age where she loves coloring books. She is completely fascinated by all the different colors and can’t get enough of the different mediums available. We have more crayons than any one family should have, and somehow we seem to keep accumulating more. Every restaurant we go to hands them out, birthday parts always have a pack in the goody bag. Heck we even took a ferry ride from Lewes Delaware to Cape May New Jersey after our Washington, DC trip and the attendants on the ferry handed out coloring booklets and more crayons.
Always wanting to be the encouraging parents, my wife and I found that about an hour and a half away from our house was the Crayola Factory. My parents wanted to come too so we picked a Saturday and headed over to Easton, PA. Upon arrival we parked in a garage directly across from the factory and were greeted with the brightest yellow exterior to a building I had ever seen. There was a large box of crayons attached to the top of the building with the crayons falling down towards the street. This building definitely stood out.
Once inside while we were paying for our admission tickets we were informed numerous times that this wasn’t the actual Crayola Factory, but rather the Crayola Experience. I factory is supposed to be nearby but not open to the public. This location does include history of Crayola and even has some exhibits showing how the different products are created at the factory.
The Crayola Experience is a pretty large place. It takes up about 4 floors of the building and there are many different rooms with lots of stuff going on. When you pay your admission you get a few Crayola tokens which can be redeemed throughout the place for custom crayons, markers and even small boxes of crayons. We did spend some time creating some custom labels for our crayons based on our daughter Hanna. Our favorite was a red crayon labeled “Hanna’s Fury”.
There are stair cases to go up and down to the different floors or there is also an elevator which isn’t very fast. On the second floor right beside the elevator door was the first penny machine.
The only issue with this machine was that it wasn’t leveled very well and would rock as you tried to turn the handle. The pennies still came out fine but it was a little awkward to use.
This machine had 4 designs: Crayola logo, Crayola Easton PA, A Crayon upside down and a Crayon in a cup with other crayons. Hanna loved this place. There were different stations all over the place with lots of crafts and things to play with. She was mesmerized by a large crayon that had water and bubbles inside of it. If we had let her she probably would have started at it all afternoon.
We spent most of the day going from room to room creating our own crayons and markers and coming away with a pretty big bag of Hanna’s artwork for the wall once we got home. By this time we had made it all the way up to the top floor and decided to take the elevator back down instead of 4 flights of stairs. When we got off the elevator we went right into the Crayola store which appeared to have every Crayola product ever made. Grandma went a little bonkers picking up all sorts of new things, and we did get a few things for Hanna to take home. Remember, always trying to encourage the creative size. After we checked out from the store I noticed another penny machine by the exit. I was somehow unaware of this additional machine and quickly had to grab my emergency penny kit to grab some additional quarters and pennies to press these designs.
There were 4 designs in this machine as well. They included: The Crayola Experience logo, the Box of falling crayons, I Heart Crayola and a Marker dancing.
Always a great feeling to find a new machine that I wasn’t previously aware of, and am certainly thankful I had my backup collecting kit with extra change stored inside. You never know when your going to need it.
This was a fantastic place and Hanna really enjoyed it. We will definitely be back. It’s always nice to be able to partake in something you really enjoy. My parents, wife and I loved seeing Hanna making her artwork, Hanna loved playing with all the colorful crayons. Plus I got to collect some new pennies for my collection. Keep your eyes open you never know where a new machine will pop up.